27 Feb '14, 2pm

Coach outflanking Louis Vuitton in China

Coach outflanking Louis Vuitton in China

(Bloomberg) -- Corina Su aspires to someday own a handbag or shoes from luxury brands like Louis Vuitton or Gucci. For now, Kate Spade, Michael Kors, or Coach will do. "We call these the American trendy brands," said Ms. Su, a 25-year-old who works in advertising in Shanghai. She prefers Kate Spade's bright colors and bold designs to the more muted styles offered by the big European luxury houses that tout their heritage to justify charging more. "I might eventually buy an LV or Gucci bag," Ms. Su said. "But it will not be until I'm much older, I suspect." As Chinese shoppers like Ms. Su get better acquainted with so-called accessible luxury brands, they're discovering a designer wardrobe doesn't have to cost them months of pay. That's helping U.S. labels such as Coach Inc., whose handbags tend to sell for under $400. It comes as many European luxury-goods makers raise the...

Full article: http://www.crainsnewyork.com/article/20140227/RETAIL_APPA...

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